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Senegal marks 55th Independence Day

Ambassador Mamadou Ndiaye of the Republic of Senegal in Seoul hosted a reception at the Lotte Hotel in Seoul on April 3, 2015 to celebrate the 55th anniversary of independence of his country. There were many distinguished guests from Korean society as well as from the Diplomatic Corps and other segments of international community in Korea. Among them were Deputy Minitser Choi Hee-nam of the Foreign Affairs for International Affairs, Rep. An Min-suk of the National Assembly, Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik of The Korea Post, Mrs. Kim Sun-hyang (spouse of the president of the Kyungnam University), Chairperson Bockhee Lee of Global Youth Fair (vice chairperson of Seoul Women’s Association) and Vice President Lee Myung-hoon of KOTFA. From the Diplomatic Corps came many mission chiefs and other senior diplomats, who included Ambassadors Mohammad Saleem Sayeb of Afghanistan, Derragui Mohammed Elamine of Algeria, Albino Malungo of Angola, Ramzi Teymurov of Azerbaijan, Khandker Masudul Alam of Bangladesh (CDA), Natallia Jhylevich of Belarus, Suth Dina of Cambodia, Sylvestre Kouassi Bile of Cote d’Ivoire, Grecia Fiodalicia Pichardo of Dominican Republic, Hany Moawad Selim Labib of Egypt, Carlos Victor Boungou of Gabon, Nikoloz Apkhazava of Georgia, Michel Idiaquez Baradat of Honduras, Dulat Bakisher of Kazakhstan, Duishonkul Chotonov of Kyrgyzstan, Dlias Nicolas of Lebanon (CDA), Otman S. Saad Ahbara of Libya, Mohammed Chraibi of Morocco, Zahid Nasrulah Khan of Pakistan, Raul S. Hernandez of the Philippines, Krzysztof Majka of Poland, Emma-Francoise Isumbingabo of Rwanda, Omrie Michael Golley of Sierra Leone, Nozuko Gloria Bam of South Africa, Tissa Wijeratne of Sri Lanka, Mohamed Ali Nafti of Tunisia, Hakan Okcal of Turkey, Charles John Hay of United Kingdom and Mumba Smyth Kapumpa of Zambia.Speaking to the guests, Ambassador Ndiaye of Senegal said: “Following his brilliant election at the helm of the country in March 2012, President Macky Sall has set good governance, macroeconomic stability and economic development as the key priorities of his government. According to most of our partners, reforms and policies being implemented by the Government of Senegal are conducive to competitiveness and ultimately to sustainable growth.” Excerpts from the speech follow:

▲Ambassador Mamadou Ndiaye of the Republic of Senegal, third from left, speaks to the guests welcoming them and explaining to them on the Independence Day of Senegal and cooperative relations and friendship between Korea and his country.

Excerpts from ambassador speech:
Mr. Hee-nam Choi, Deputy Minister for International Affairs of the Ministry of Strategy and Finance,The Honourable An Min-suk, Member of the National Assembly,Excellencies, Ambassadors and members of the Diplomatic Corps,Distinguished Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen, It gives me a great pleasure to welcome all of you to the celebration of the 55th Anniversary of Senegal’s Independence Day. I thank you so much for joining us this evening. I am particularly grateful to the Deputy Minister Hee-nam Choi who is representing the Korean Government and also to the Honorable An Min-suk, President of the Senegal-Korea Parliamentary Committee at the National Assembly. The Honourable An has just returned from an official visit to Senegal and I would like to thank him for taking time out of his tight schedule to be with us.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The celebration of the National Day affords me the opportunity to review the significant developments that have occurred in Senegal over the past 12 months and the major events scheduled to take place in the near future. In doing so, I would like to thank Almighty Allah for having made of our country a land of peace, cultural diversity and social cohesion. Indeed, Senegal is renowned for its political and social stability which we owe to the solidarity of the Senegalese people and the wisdom of our political leaders. Following his brilliant election at the helm of the country, in March 2012, the current President of the Republic, His Excellency Macky Sall, has set good governance, macroeconomic stability and economic development as the key priorities of his government. According to most of our partners, reforms and policies being implemented by the Government of Senegal are conducive to competitiveness and ultimately to sustainable growth. It is in this context that the Government has launched several infrastructure projects, within the framework of the Emerging Senegal Plan, an ambitious program which aims to turn Senegal into an emerging country by 2035. One of these projects concerns the construction of the new satellite city of Diamniadio that is expected to host 40,000 housing units and to become a regional hub for higher education and research. Likewise, the Government has launched a 115 km highway project which will connect Thies to Touba, two of Senegal’s largest cities in terms of population and economic potential. This project will generate 7,000 jobs during the construction period and 500 permanent jobs in the operation phase. It is also the ambition of the Government to revitalize the Senegalese railway sector. In this regard, feasibility studies are being conducted for the construction of a railway linking the capital city and the new international airport which is expected to open within two years. At the same time, the development of human capital is also accorded a great importance. In this respect, the Government has decided to build two new universities in the Capital City, Dakar, and the central Province of Kaolack. The construction of the Dakar University has already started and for the University of Kaolack, the foundation stone will be laid on 13th April, 2015. In addition, the Government will build a dozen Tertiary Education Vocational Institutes with the objective of training highly qualified professionals in a variety of disciplines. I am glad to mention that one of these institutes will be built with the support of KOICA. An agreement was signed last week in Dakar between KOICA and my Government and the construction is expected to begin before the end of this year. I take this opportunity to inform the Korean private sector that there are a number of infrastructure projects that the Government intends to implement through public and private partnerships. The Embassy in Seoul is ready to provide detailed information on these projects and the various incentives offered by the Government.
Since the establishment of the diplomatic relations between Senegal and the Republic Korea, in October 1962, the two countries have developed a rich and mutually beneficial cooperation which encompasses agriculture, education, fisheries and ICT to mention but a few sectors.

▲Ambassadors Dulat Bakisher of Kazakhstan, Mohammed Chraibi of Morocco, Raul S. Hernandez of the Philippines, Duishonkul Chotonov of Kyrgyzstan, Carlos Victor Boungou of Gabon, Nikoloz Apkhazava of Georgia, Hany Moawad Selim Labib of Egypt, Sylvestre Kouassi Bile of Cote d’Ivoire, , Krzysztof Majka of Poland, Suth Dina of Cambodia, Mohammad Saleem Sayeb of Afghanistan, Hakan Okcal of Turkey, Grecia Fiodalicia Pichardo of Dominican Republic and Ramzi Teymurov of Azerbaijan; Rep. Ahn Min-suk; Ambassadors Mohamed Ali Nafti of Tunisia, Mamadou Ndiaye of Senegal and Derragui Mohammed Elamine of Algeria; Deputy Minitser Choi Hee-nam; a diplomat; Ambassadors Omrie Michael Golley of Sierra Leone and Otman S. Saad Ahbara of Libya; counsellor of Sudan; Ambassadors Albino Malungo of Angola and Zahid Nasrulah Khan of Pakistan; a diplomat; and Ambassadors Mumba Smyth Kapumpa of Zambia, Emma-Francoise Isumbingabo of Rwanda, Charles John Hay of United Kingdom, Nozuko Gloria Bam of South Africa and Tissa Wijeratne of Sri Lanka.

The recent visit to Senegal by a delegation from the Korean National Assembly provides a concrete illustration of the quality of the relations between the two countries. I would like to reaffirm that the Republic of Korea is one of Senegal’s most important partners. My Government accords a great importance to its cooperation with this country and is working closely with the Korean authorities for the strengthening and the expansion of our relations. The first phase of the Maritime Infrastructure and Equipment Project which was implemented in cooperation with Korea Eximbank, has just come to completion.
Under this project, two passenger ferry boats, one cold storage and two harbor terminals have been built and equipped by a Korean consortium led by Samsung C&T and Dongil Shipyard. Discussions are currently taking place between the two governments with high expectations for the implementation of the second phase of this important project. In April 2014, a delegation from the Ministry of Strategy and Finance of Korea visited my country to hold a bilateral policy dialogue with Senegal’s Ministry of Economy and Finance while the Secretary-General of our Ministry of Foreign Affairs came to Seoul in August to have similar talks with his Korean counterpart

이경식 기자  edt@koreapost.com

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